Meet Diamante Murru, cherished longstanding collaborator of Ask & Embla and the captivating personality and face of our Mətasapiens collection campaign. With a myriad of talents, Diamante is an exceptional multi-disciplinary artist, renowned for her enchanting ornamental and tribal blackwork style of tattooing, and her awe-inspiring acrobatic prowess. Beyond her artistry, she is also the founder of ethical brand, Minimal Ethic, dedicated to crafting sustainable clothing and plastic-free tattoo supplies.
In this exclusive interview, we delve into Diamante’s life and artistic journey, and also ask her what it was like working on-set with the Ask & Embla team.
Q: What is your philosophy when it comes to your life and art? How do these intertwine and inspire each other?
A: My perspective is that Life and Art coexist within the same realm; I don't perceive them as separate entities. As an artist, I perceive the world through a lens of creativity, infusing every creation with elements of my life. The ethos that drives my life aligns harmoniously with my artistic expression, and this synergy works reciprocally. Growing up, I was immersed in an environment saturated with art, because my mother was an artist herself, which has rendered this connection organic and instinctive for me.
Q: Can you share with us your personal connection to body modification and adornment—tattoos, ear stretching and piercings. How did these forms of self-expression begin and what significance does it hold for you?
A: My journey into body modification took root during my early adolescence, around the age of 12, when I got my first piercing, followed by ear stretching between the ages of 13 and 14. This initial exploration was definitely influenced by my connection with punk culture and a profound fascination with body modification within indigenous tribes.
At 19, I got my first tattoo. However, even before that, I was engaged in the realm of body art, not yet as a tattoo artist, but rather as a performer using my body as a canvas for artistic expression. During this period, I pursued a diploma in Art, with a dedicated focus on the spectrum of body art, spanning its historical origins to contemporary manifestations.
My involvement as a body painter continued for several years, leading me to finally embrace tattooing at the age of 23. To me, body art encapsulates all that resonates deeply with my passions. It harmonizes my desire to create permanent art, to channel personal transformations through Art, and what makes it even more captivating is that I get to utilize the human body as a dynamic canvas—a space where artistic expression goes beyond the surface to create visually captivating narratives.
Q: We believe the art of body adornment brings about a spiritual and transcendental effect and experience that goes beyond the body. How does this manifest before you, personally, and through your work with your clients?
A: I deeply resonate with this perspective, as it aligns closely with my own artistic philosophy. In my interactions with clients, I approach each session as a sacred ritual rather than a mere commercial tattoo appointment. I truly believe that during these moments, we share a significant exchange of energy that has the power to bring about profound life changes. This transformative experience is not only impactful for the client receiving the artwork, but it also contributes to my personal growth as both a human being and an Artist. Every interaction with my clients offers me a unique opportunity to learn and evolve. During these sessions, we are not solely collaborating on a design; I am also leading them in transcending physical pain and moving towards a higher state of being. This process creates a remarkable and sacred connection between us. I am eternally grateful to all my clients for giving me the chance to pursue my passion daily and collaborate with them in the creation of their newfound identities.
Q: You are currently based between Los Angeles and Bali. Can you share about how this duality came to be and what it adds to your experience?
A: I tend to follow my instincts when it comes to relocating, adapting to new environments easily. Previously, I established myself in Berlin (a place I continue to visit due to ongoing business commitments), and in 2021, I got my work visa for the United States, leading me to choose Los Angeles as my base. The decision was largely influenced by my preference for warm weather and abundant sunlight! Similarly, my love for the culture and of Bali's charm drew me to spend various periods of time there over the past few years. While I wouldn’t consider Bali as my primary base, I always love to go back there to spend a few months every year experiencing something magic. I'm currently awaiting the right opportunity to establish more lasting roots in a single location, but until then, I find comfort in considering various places as home, spending extended periods in each of them.
Q: Tell us more about your sustainable brand for clothing and tattoo supplies, Minimal Ethic. What made you start it and how has its journey been so far?
A: The genesis of both my brands, Minimal Ethic, is rooted in a shared mission of sustainability—one within the realm of fashion and the other tailored to the tattoo industry. My motivation emerged from a deep concern for our planet's well-being and my love for the art of tattooing. Every day would make me very sad to see the amount of plastic waste generated after every tattoo session, so I decided to create a line of biodegradable products not only for my own use but for all the other Artists to join the mission. Originally, I had planned to introduce the tattoo supply brand in 2020, but the advent of the Covid pandemic led me to reconsider due to the industry-wide shutdowns. During this time, I decided to channel my creative energies into launching my sustainable fashion brand. I’ve always been passionate about drawing clothing and during the lockdown I had enough free time to study materials, fabrics, and sustainable practices. As a result, the brand is completely sustainable—from its fabrics and details to its ethical work practices and eco-conscious shipping methods.
Managing all together alongside tattooing full time hasn't been easy: Over the past few years, I've found myself navigating the shifting priorities between these projects, especially considering my unwavering love for tattooing which occupies most of my time. While tattooing remains my main love, the mission to supply sustainable tattoo products has taken on a life of its own, quickly capturing the attention of people worldwide. This project has required me to invest a big amount of my personal time and energy, but seeing the impact makes it all incredibly rewarding!/p>
Q: The Mətasapiens collection is a fusion of ancient tribalistic traditions reimagined with futuristic aesthetics. How do you relate to the concept of mixing old with new, especially in the way you express your creative artistry through tattooing and acro?
A: The concept of blending ancient tribal traditions with futuristic aesthetics, as seen in the Mətasapiens collection, deeply resonates with me! Despite living in a contemporary world, there has always been a powerful tribal undercurrent in my life. This duality speaks to me on a personal level and it manifests in many ways. In my tattoo designs, as well as my aesthetic choices in clothing and accessories, I have fun in blending the modern with the tribal. It's a way of bridging the gap between eras, infusing each piece with a unique sense of timelessness.
Q: Thank you so much for being an integral part of our Mətasapiens collection and campaign. As a longstanding collaborator of the Ask & Embla, the team was exceptionally excited to finally meet and work with you in-person. What was the experience like for you?
A: It was an absolute pleasure to be a part of the Mətasapiens collection and campaign with the Ask & Embla team. I loved everything about it—Olivia and the team were extremely lovely and I was very excited to finally meet them in person. The collection itself is absolutely stunning and all the looks they’ve created for the shoot was very impressive and inspiring. I feel incredibly fortunate to have had the chance to work alongside such talented and wonderful people!
Q: What are your favorite jewelry pieces from the Mətasapiens collection?
A: Oh, that's a tough one! Honestly, I fell in love with so many pieces, from the captivating ear cuffs to the ear weights, not to mention the minimalistic design of the rings and lip jewelry, I truly found myself in awe by the entire range, and even found a new appreciation for the silver color, which I never considered for myself before!
Q: Is there anything else that you would like to mention for us to include in this feature?
A: Absolutely, I'd love to share some exciting news with the community. I'm thrilled to announce that Minimal.Ethic will soon be establishing its base in California, for both the fashion and tattoo supply company, marking a significant milestone for me. This means we'll be able to offer shipping from this side of the world, bringing our sustainable products closer to a broader audience. It's a step I'm genuinely looking forward to, and I can't wait to see how this new chapter unfolds!